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Book offers practical advice to college graduates

If there were a textbook for Adulthood 101, Rebekah Knight’s book, A Car, Some Cash and a Place to Crash, would be it.

Geared toward recent college graduates, this useful handbook offers hundreds of tips on dozens of subjects facing young adults.

These subjects include acing an interview, finding a date, using a credit card and outwitting the notoriously crafty car salesman.

The book’s advice is appealing because it remains throughout practical, honest and relevant.

For example, Knight admits that a new apartment probably will not be perfect, but she offers tips to make it look more homey on a budget.

In another chapter, she includes several healthy recipes, a chart of the food pyramid and advice on how to cook meals ahead of time in order to eat well, even on the run.

Her advice is useful because it is thorough and because it warns of common mistakes such as overusing credit cards and losing money to a dishonest landlord.

The book is truly able to speak accurately and sympathetically to recent graduates. Knight herself is only a few years out of college, and she includes the advice and experience of over one hundred other professionals and adults.

The book is also excellent because it offers encouragement to overwhelmed graduates, and Knight is not afraid to share her own embarrassing moments, such as when she spilled pizza on her one and only business suit just before a big interview.

And in the end, she cheers college graduates on.

“As you adjust to your new life, you’ll have your own experiences and your own advice to pass on; you will have earned the right along with the scars you will have picked up along the way,” she said in her conclusion.

With a helpful tool like A Car, Some Cash and a Place to Crash, the transition to the real world doesn’t look so scary after all.

A few tips from the book:

Use life experiences to your advantage on a resume:

“Your semester abroad in London: international experience.”

Research a car before buying:

“Enter the dealership armed with prices, quotes and invoice numbers.”

Check the car’s VIN:

“When I did a check on the VIN, all that came up was one word: ‘salvaged.'”

Understand security deposits:

“The landlord may keep your security deposit if you fail to pay rent or leave before the end of your lease, but otherwise your deposit should be returned to you, with interest in most cases.”

Be observant at your new job:

“Be on the lookout for hints about what is and is not acceptable in the workplace.”

Know when to quit a job:

“When your learning curve flattens, recognize it may be time to move on.”

Be assertive with insurance companies:

“Prod them. Nudge them. Bug them. Call every day if you must.”

Know what to expect of college relationships post-graduation:

“Your friendships go through a process of natural selection. You’ll gravitate toward the people you care about and deem worthwhile.”

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